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Baltimore has far more pressing issues than renaming Columbus Day | READER COMMENTARY

Andrew Thompson of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma brings his dance down the steps at the statue of Christopher Columbus at a rally for Indigenous Peoples' Day Fri., Nov. 29, 2019. (Karl Merton Ferron/Baltimore Sun Staff). The statue was damaged by protesters this summer.
Andrew Thompson of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma brings his dance down the steps at the statue of Christopher Columbus at a rally for Indigenous Peoples' Day Fri., Nov. 29, 2019. (Karl Merton Ferron/Baltimore Sun Staff). The statue was damaged by protesters this summer. (Karl Merton Ferron/Baltimore Sun)

Once again, the City Council finds a way to distract Baltimoreans from the real problems facing us (“Unheeded history: Why Indigenous Peoples' Day is overdue,” Sept. 21). Renaming Columbus Day should barely move from the bottom of that list. I’m indifferent to Christopher Columbus, but to my Italian American neighbors he’s a big deal. Why not save this issue for another day?

Our leaders should focus on the horrific damage to our economy caused by the coronavirus pandemic and how it has negatively impacted education. They also should research the criminal legacy of the Catherine Pugh administration and, as always, Baltimore’s unacceptable murder rate. Indigenous Peoples' Day can wait!

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It might be worth the City Council’s time to learn there already is an American Indian Heritage Day on the state calendar. This year it will fall on Nov. 27. We don’t need two days for the same purpose. Baltimore City has few Indigenous People living in the area.

R. N. Nester, Baltimore

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